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How Water Can Damage a Residential or Commercial Property
People worried about water damage usually think about the worst-case scenario, such as a flood. And while that kind of hazard is undoubtedly a possibility here in the Milwaukee area, this isn’t the only kind of threat that property owners face from water.
Water can cause immense damage to a home or business without necessarily forcing people to sit on their roofs to avoid drowning. Here’s what else water can do to property besides just flooding it.
The Types of Damage Water Can Cause to Your Home or Business
Wood is an organic material and, in nature, can absorb water. Even when wood is removed from a tree and used as a load-bearing beam or other construction components, it still retains this ability to absorb water and be structurally weakened by it. If wood absorbs enough water, this can soften it and eventually cause it to change shape, warping it. Depending on where this warping occurs, it can look unsightly, such as a crooked staircase or railing, or it can threaten the structural integrity of the home if it’s a load-bearing beam no longer strong enough to carry its designed mass.
Drywall or plaster can, when it absorbs enough water, discolor and eventually soften and deform. A leaking pipe in a wall, or a ceiling, for example, may first be noticed as a changing of color in a wall or ceiling. Unaddressed, however, that water absorption will steadily continue, softening the material. This may look like bumps or sags for ceilings, while walls may dent simply by touching or poking them. Eventually, this leaves a property looking damaged and run down. Given enough time, it can cause structural issues and lead to an unsafe environment.
Finally, and perhaps most threatening of all, water is a key environmental element for mold, especially the toxic types such as black mold that carry high respiratory, cardiac, and even neuromuscular risks. A mold infestation occurs in a consistently damp environment, and the mold reproduces by sending spores into the air. As long as people are in the building, whether it is a residence or a workplace, they breathe in the spores. If anyone with an existing respiratory condition is immunocompromised due to illness or medical treatment, a mold-related illness’s risks go up dramatically.
What To Do About Restoring Residential or Commercial Water Damage
Water damage can occur in any number of ways besides flooding. A poorly maintained roof, for example, will let in water with every rainstorm and snowmelt. A foundation that isn’t adequately protected against moisture, such as poor gutter location and management, may eventually crack and admit water into a basement.
If this happens to you here in the Milwaukee area, we can help. Emergency Restoration Specialists, Inc. has over 30 years of experience in helping with severe or disaster response needs. We can assess the situation, contain the immediate threat, and then start remediating the areas that need it to be suitable for work or habitation again. Contact us for a prompt, professional response, and enjoy the peace of mind that comes from a rapid, professional response.